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Heriot’s takes pupil well-being very seriously. In the Junior School, pupil care falls to the Class Teacher, who will liaise with the Junior School Leadership Team as necessary. Our youngest pupils know their Class Teacher better than any other member of staff and may naturally seek their teacher’s help first.
Class Teachers oversee the guidance of pupils and provide pastoral support with the help of our Deputes and Learning Enhancement staff. Positive values are nurtured among pupils, parents and staff, with the Head and Deputy Head of Junior School leading the way.
The pastoral system is just one aspect of our supportive setting. All Heriot’s pupils learn in a caring and secure environment, where relationships are based on trust. Junior School play times are supervised, and Senior School pupils act as helpers and role models. Parents often comment on the warmth of the relationship between pupils and teachers.
Heriot’s is one big family, where we all look out for one another. Every Heriot’s pupil is valued and cared about by staff, by their peers and by older pupils too. Heriot’s pupils feel safe and secure, and want to come to school. When they are happy in school, they can focus on learning and doing their best.
Support for Learning (SfL) at Heriot’s is committed to raising the standard of attainment for all pupils, enabling each to achieve his or her full potential. The Department is a whole-school resource for staff, pupils and parents alike, offering assistance where a barrier to learning might occur and in turn collaborating with different departments to foster a continuous and progressive approach to learning for pupils through Nursery, Junior and Senior years. Workshops to support teachers and parents are also offered to equip parents and staff with teaching and learning strategies to ensure everyone is well informed about the impact of learning differences.
A Heriot’s-designed comprehensive screening programme of foundation skills is carried out with all Nursery and P1 pupils, forming the basis of individual learning profiles for each Heriot’s pupil, highlighting individual strengths as well as areas that might need a boost to give each child the very best start for school. This Early Learning Skills programme is unique to Heriot’s and is applied by some of the best schools in the world, according to recent PISA ratings.
Support for Learning recognises and promotes healthy self-esteem as a core component of successful learning through a variety of activities including a popular pupil lunch club, ‘The Base’, for Upper Primary pupils. Here, enthusiastic SfL pupils enjoy creative activities and listen to talks on learning differences. In turn, these pupils go on to raise awareness of learning differences throughout school by a variety of means, from creating posters about Dyslexia Awareness Week to delivering school assemblies on neurodiversity.